Cardboard Wings

by Birdlips

supported by
/
  • Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

     $10 USD  or more

     

1.
2.
03:59
3.
4.
03:30
5.
04:56
6.
03:18
7.
8.
9.
01:53
10.

credits

released February 12, 2008

cover photo by Erin Henshaw

birdlips is Clifford John Usher and Lindsay Pitts

Clifford John Usher – vocals, guitars, banjo, percussion, wind instruments, drums and bass on 6
Lindsay Pitts – keyboards, electric chord organ, vocals on 5 and 6
Sean McVey – drums/percussion on 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, and 8
Brian Wahl – upright bass on 1, 4, 5, and 8
Sam Chernoff – cello on 1 and 8
Larry Zipf – organ on 7

produced by Clifford John Usher
engineered by Abel Okugawa
mixed by Abel Okugawa and Clifford John Usher
recorded and Mixed at Monkeyclaus in Virginia
mastered by Alan Douches at West West Side Music

all songs written by C. Usher except 'tire chains' written by C. Usher and L. Pitts

tags

license

all rights reserved

about

Birdlips

contact / help

Contact Birdlips

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code

Track Name: cardboard wings
Yesterday's fallen rain for tomorrow's rising steam
And I am sealed inside this vessel somewhere in between
Behind the hissing frigid air, behind the sheets of metal
My throat is caught on a cluster of knots and my heart has nowhere to settle

I stuff some things in bags in the blue morning light
All the rest in boxes I'd packed throughout the night
Down into the cellar where they'd surely gather dust
Shove them 'neath the stairs all cobwebs and rust

My nostrils rolling mold, the fog is thick and cold
The wheels begin to turn though their gears are stiff and old
I'm in another purgatory, static blistering white
Some lady in a uniform is calling out my flight

Then the strangers kiss goodbye, their airport is a hive
Their tin voices buzzing on portable machines
My ears explode inside my head as the honey spills alive
Sweeping up the little ants, their boxes and their beans

Yesterday's fallen rain for tomorrow's rising steam
And I am sealed inside this vessel somewhere in between
Behind the hissing frigid air, behind the sheets of metal
My throat is caught on a cluster of knots and my heart has nowhere to settle

My memories and dreams meet somewhere in the now
But I've lost my place and I'm buried in these clouds
And I've lived my whole life in the boxes left behind
But they'd grown so suffocating, pinching at the binds

Had to cut them with a razor, and nearly broke the blade
Hungry ghosts just waiting to clip the wings I made
Looking out these weathered panes from 30,000 feet
I see my shadow sailing in a plane over the sea

Yesterday's fallen rain for tomorrow's rising steam
And I am sealed inside this vessel somewhere in between
Behind the hissing frigid air, behind the sheets of metal
My throat is caught on a cluster of knots and my heart has nowhere to settle

And when I stepped off of the tarmac, made my way to the baggage claim
I found it only fitting that the baggage never came

I guess I'm freer that way
Track Name: magicfish
Well I'll tell you what I do remember
Waking up to circling sharks
Wipe the vomit off my lips
Stumble out from pounding dark

An 8am sun stings my eyes
Searching for a taxi cab
I'm lost and long un-tucked and dry
Wondering how I paid my tab

A morning drifter passes out
Sells his color to the night
Herds the Metro's own devout
Around his sty and drunk delight

And I just look the other way
Sailing back to bars and clubs
Swigging liquor from my coat
Casting nets and cigarette stubs


"Flounder, flounder in the sea,
Come, I pray thee, here to me.
I need someone to help me see
The beauty that's escaping me."


Find a woman, set me straight
Help me lift this ugly weight
For my body is a shell to fill
And it wills not as I'd have it will

So once again I cast my nets
Fishing for a foreign love
But expectations never please
And my catch is nothing much to speak of

Gorgeous girls burn pocket holes
For play-school cash and costly change
Falling out in conversation
I'm rattling empty, thin and strange

And in my head a tiny voice
The indiscriminate Taster's Choice
Says:

Was I not born with all I need?
Was I not God all along?
Indulging in my lust and greed,
Make-believing right and wrong?


"Flounder, flounder in the sea,
Come, I pray thee, here to me.
I need someone to help me see
The beauty that's escaping me."


This excess lives on tiny scales
Any thrill is just a tease
Cuz expectations never please
Even when they're on their knees

And I'm on my knees
Track Name: when the last light goes out
I keep my window open wide
So the pitch that's brewed can pour inside
I keep my eyes open wide
To fight the deep and frozen tide

But I'm anchored to a hide...
And slipping off the floe

I leaned a little out the window
Saw my body down below
Eleven stories to the bottom
I never thought I'd fall so fast
And in that dark and dreadful glimpse
Of what it is to not exist
With twisted limbs to sleep forever
On wet cement and broken glass

I'd sleep beneath a waterfall
Of sewage pipes along the wall

But I'd prefer to lay awake
And dream about another's shape
I feel her hands caressing mine
Another place, another time

As my pupils dilate
Shadows shifting alter state
And drifting on the body's weight
My ears defy this heavy fate

Skimming swiftly over sheets
And soft stones on cobbled streets
They perch outside a tiny room
And bask in the spell of night in bloom

And the neighbors' gliding silhouettes
Creaking beds and heavy breath
Sweep the bread crumbs making way
For radios and cigarettes
Track Name: scarecrow
What I got for hay, all the summer's yield, put it in a knapsack
Strapped to my burlap back in the morning in the cornfield
Spittin' kernels in the dust
When I'm through with the husk gonna leave it behind
Squint my black button eyes and set them on the horizon


Shimmy-shake the mud cakes
Loose from my bones my bones my bones
Gonna find a home for my soul


Moonlight dice roll the alley cats out
From their fishbone homes and their gutter ball spouts
Plenty of people, plenty of glass
We pocket the stones and the hours pass
Saving up for the battle royal


Shimmy-shake the mud cakes
Loose from my bones my bones my bones
Gonna find a home for my soul
Track Name: giving up
This broken cup is a useless waste
All the heat inside long ago escaped
All that's left is a lukewarm paste
I sip from it slowly but it's a bitter taste

I look around and see the same blank face
On every person I pass with haste


I'm giving up on humanity
I'm giving up faster than the speed of light
I'm going back to sleep
Maybe in my dreams I can figure out my life


I met a woman in a dream
She said her name was Hope
And I said, "What does that mean?
And why have we all grown so cold
And allowed ourselves to be bought and sold?"

Then she said, "Honey, now, don't you fear
The answer that you seek is near
In fact it's sitting right in front of you
Listen up and I'll tell you a thing or two


"You see, we, we are so deep,
We are so sweet,
We are so raw
But, like fruit on a tree,
We've no eyes to see
The branches that connect us all."


I don't want to be useless
Like this broken cup
I want the hole in me
All patched up
I want to feel the heat again
I want to hold my fate in my own two hands


I'm giving up on infinity
I'm giving up faster than the speed of light
But I'm filling in the hole that was left in me
And I'm leaving it far behind


Because we, we are so deep,
We are so sweet,
We are so raw
Like fruit on a tree,
We've no eyes to see
The branches that connect us all
Track Name: tire chains
So we joined the circus on a tire chain ride
We had a car for five
Handle in the passenger side

Numb needles in the morning rain
Drawing circles in
Whispers on the window pane


When we got to France it began to snow
So we stood on the rocks
And let the cold wind blow

Time is only worth the air it buys
We can't spend our lives
Plotting our path as the crow flies
Track Name: some kind of death
We fell asleep inside a blanket on the floor
Beside the chest we'd pushed against the door
The light we'd lit flickered on the bed
Swallowing the empty bottle of red


What was it you said about stitches and mending
That we'd do anything to keep this moment from ending
Our wax hearts melted when the curtains caught fire
As we lay there dreaming of a funeral pyre


What we were became the smoke and ash
That blanketed our heads as it rained down
We couldn't do anything but watch
And wonder how we got out


What was it you said about stitches and mending
That we'd do anything to keep this moment from ending
But some kind of death awaits every new beginning
Some kind of death awaits every new beginning


What was it you said about stitches and mending
That we'd do anything to keep this moment from ending
We couldn't do anything to keep this moment from ending
Track Name: blades of grass
I must've learned something
From the blades of grass
How to bend in the wind
And to let things pass


Now the only regret that I've ever had
Is that I didn't give you the shirt off my back


I must've learned something
From the way you smile
How things can be perfect
Once in a while


Now the only regret that I've ever had
Is that I didn't give you the shirt off my back
Track Name: dream within a dream
Get up, get up
The sun is pouring over the horizon
Streaming coffee in your cup

Outside, outside
So much shit to listen to
The engine's purring, begging you to ride

And there's no point in tugging at the reins
This world is strange and beautiful
We are running through its veins

You hit me like a flood
Was it love or lust or maybe just the chemicals
Bubbling in our blood

When we had to run
Though I tried I couldn't say goodbye
The cotton words stumbled on my tongue

Now I'm waking up, none of it was real
How can it matter what we think or what we feel
When everything we see and everything we seem
Is but a dream within a dream within a dream